Medical records plan wins youth business contest

Mr Ernest Jura receives his cash awards. Mr Ture Boru, the acting CEO of Youth Enterprise Development Fund, presented Mr Jura, who produced the best overall business plan, with a cheque for Sh1 million.

A business plan to develop a system aimed at helping doctors and nurses improve how they interact with their patients has won this year’s national business plan writing competition.

The developer, Mr Ernest Jura, 26, said it combines several information technology procedures such as online medial practice to improve patient-doctor relations, financial management and medical records management to improve how doctors report on their procedures.

The system will be launched before the end of the year, he said. His company, Collabmed has partnered with to develop the system.

But it still requires further funding of about Sh10 million and Mr Jura, who won Sh1 million and a laptop, said they were looking for investors.

The system will come in handy in the efforts to computerise medical records in Kenya, most of which are in paper form. This has been costly to medical researchers and medical insurance companies, which lack data to develop the cost of premiums.

The paper records have specifically exposed the medial insurance industry to fraud, which results in loss of up to 30 per cent of their premiums.

The existing medical insurance costing data has been borrowed from South Africa and the United Kingdom, countries with higher average personal incomes than Kenya and therefore not representative of the cost treatment frequency and proper death records.

“I once worked for National AIDS Control Programme and that is when I realised the information management challenges facing our healthcare industry,” said Mr Jura, an information technology graduate of the University of Nairobi.

His plan was judged the best among the shortlisted 100 business plans from across the country in a competition that was organised by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Enablis Entrepreneurial Network East Africa, an entrepreneurs network with commitment to improve business capacity among the youth in Africa.

Other companies, among them the Business Daily, Safaricom, Microsoft and HP also supported the Chora Bizna Enablis LaunchPad Business Plan Competition.

“Entrepreneurship capacity in Kenya is high and the intention is to give the youth an opportunity to participate in running their own businesses,” said Mr James Gachui, the chairman of Enablis East Africa.

The finalists will become members of Enablis, helping them to benefit from mentoring, training and financing opportunities from the network.

Enablis has partnered with the Youth Enterprise Fund to set up a Sh300 million kitty from where financing of the business plans will be sourced.

Business plans that were presented varied in sectors representing what the organisers called “varied business ideas” from across the country.

Among the business plans recognised at the awards ceremony was one using sugar waste bargasse to manufacture sanitary towels.

The project is based in Nyando District. The towels cost half of what is imported in Kenya and offer relief to low income users.

Another business plan involves commercial rearing of rabbits in Nyandarua District. The rabbits are reared for meat, hide fur and manure.

The project has started and the developers are looking for Sh1 million to set up a rabbit slaughterhouse and to market their brand, Ken Sungura.

The participants were encouraged to make use of the devolved funds by applying for funding of their business at the constituency level.

They were told that they should start their business with theaim of exporting goods and services rather than settling for cottage industries.

The competition aims to increase entrepreneurship skills among the youth. It targets 11 million young people across the country.

The targeted sectors included manufacturing and construction, tourism and eco-tourism.

Others are transport and logistics; green / ecological business, business and professional services, agri-business and agri-processing, media, marketing and communication, information and information technology, fine arts and performing arts and sports, leisure and recreation.

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Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.